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Song IconDavid Bowie "Young Americans"

About "Young Americans"

Young Americans is the ninth studio album by English musician David Bowie, released on 7 March 1975 through RCA Records. The album marked a departure from the glam rock style of Bowie's previous albums, showcasing his interest in soul and R&B. Commentators have described the record as blue-eyed soul, although Bowie himself labelled the album's sound "plastic soul". Initial recording sessions took place following the first leg of his Diamond Dogs Tour in August 1974 at Sigma Sound Studios in Philadelphia with producer Tony Visconti and a variety of musicians, including guitarist Carlos Alomar, who would become one of Bowie's most frequent collaborators. Backing vocalists included singer Ava Cherry, Alomar's wife Robin Clark and then-unknown singer Luther Vandross. After the initial sessions, the tour continued, with the setlist and design changed due to the influence of the new material recorded. This portion of the tour has been labeled the Soul tour.

At the end of the tour, sessions continued at the Record Plant in New York City. After becoming friends with former Beatle John Lennon, the two collaborated on a session in January 1975 at Electric Lady Studios, with Harry Maslin producing. With Alomar, they recorded "Fame" and a cover of Lennon's Beatles song "Across the Universe". Throughout the sessions, many outtakes were recorded and the record went through numerous working titles. The cover artwork is a back-lit photograph of Bowie taken by Eric Stephen Jacobs.

Upon its release, Young Americans was very successful in the US, reaching the top 10 on the Billboard Top LPs & Tape chart, with the single "Fame" becoming Bowie's first number one hit. It received mixed reviews from music critics and continues to receive mixed reviews. Bowie himself had mixed feelings about the album, although his biographers consider it one of his most influential records, noting him as among the first white musicians of the era to overtly engage with black musical styles. The album has since been reissued multiple times and was remastered in 2016 as part of the Who Can I Be Now? (1974–1976) box set.

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